Some time ago we published a review of the Magura MT5. If you‘ve seen the review, you might know that the MT5 is or was my current favourite brake. Now we have been riding the big brother, the MT7, for a few months now. You‘ll read here the differences to the MT5 and what the brake is all about.
The technical specifications are similar to the Magura MT5. Both brakes have 4 pistons, weigh around 255gr., have the Carbotecture lever and the noble Royal Blood mineral oil flows through the brake. But there are big differences in features and braking performance. Externally, the contrasting colour combination of neon yellow and black makes a high-quality impression. The one-finger lever is equipped with a tool-free lever adjustment. The pressure point can also be adjusted within a small range. The plastic Carbotecture-SL brake master features the Magura logo embossed above the MT7 type designation. If you look further down the brake line you will find the dark grey anodized brake caliper. This is standard equipped with neon yellow covers which are changeable.
More interesting is breaking power than the outside of it. And the MT7 has enough of that. Fast and steep is exactly what the Magura is used for. The four pistons press the pads onto the disc with unbelievable force. Whenever needed, the desired braking power can be generated. It doesn‘t matter how fast you are going or how steep the trail is. At the same time this is done with a very good dosability. At first you might think that the relatively hard pressure point causes a digital on/off, i.e. „brake“ or „don‘t brake“ feeling, but this is not the case. The braking force can be controlled precisely via the lever. The limit of power is extremely high and I never had the feeling to push the limits. Even at the trail exit on the 6 km long X-Line in Saalbach, the brakes hardly caused any problems. Of course you can see that the braking power gets a bit weaker after 1000 meters height but the MT7 never let me down. The pressure point remains constant and the fading level low. Despite my relatively small hands I have few problems with hand cramps. By using the softer Race brake pads it becomes brute. The braking power is increased by 30%. You only have to remember to brake and the bike stands still. Nevertheless the dosage does not suffer. I believe that there is no brake that delivers such a high performance. But you have a free choice not only in the pads, but also in the look and the brake lever.
The Swabians are quite engaged in the topic of personalization. Compared to other manufacturers they offer a wide range of brake levers. This has the advantage that you can find the right lever for your fingers. The differences lie on the one hand in the choice of material; for example, there are levers in carbon versions, as a two-finger version or completely adjustable like the HC3 lever. The angle of the lever can be changed and adjusted to the desired braking behaviour. The pressure point is a little bit harder than the standard lever. Haptically the MT7 is upgraded by the HC3 lever and lies also very well in the fingers. I can recommend the HC3 lever to everyone who has some money left or wants more adjustment possibilities.
I also had the opportunity to test the Loic Bruni prototype lever and was completely blown away. Even on longer and hard descents I had no more hand cramps. Here I find it impressive what a big difference a few millimetres and degrees of angle can make.
You can change the covers on the caliper with relatively little effort for different coloured ones. But even without the covers, the caliper looks pretty nice. Also for the brake pads you have two options to choose from. The standard performance pads and the race pads. The Performance pads offer a longer durability. The Race pads are designed for maximum braking power. Personally I prefer the Race pads because they offer an extremely high performance but the wear is not much worse than with the Performance pads. The brake pads are easy and uncomplicated to fit thanks to the magnetic brake pistons. Pretty nice detail.
MT5 VS. MT7
But now I come to the comparison of the MT5 and MT7, as announced at the beginning. In advance I can say that the differences are relatively small. By default the MT5 comes with the two-finger lever instead of the MT7 with the one-finger lever. The lever width can be adjusted on both brakes, but the pressure point adjustment is reserved for the big brother. Also the brake master of the MT7 makes a more race-like impression due to the covers. But there are differences in terms of braking power. Although both brakes can be adjusted equally well, the maximum braking power of the MT7 is felt to be 25% stronger than the MT5. And it‘s well known that those who brake later are longer fast and that‘s true in this case. For riders who want the maximum of performance, ergonomics and features, I can only recommend the MT7.
Extremely biting braking power
Toolless adjustment possibilities
Carbotecture material does not appear high quality
The Magura MT7 are super biting brakes at a fair price. Thanks to the good dosage, the brake is recommended for downhill bikes as well as for enduro bikes. The purchase price is relatively high for the fact that the lever is made of plastic. A similarly good performance at a low price is offered by its smaller brother; the Magura MT5.